Showing posts with label Pionus. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pionus. Show all posts

Friday, June 15, 2018

The BLUE-HEADED PARROT - pionus menstruus

Pionus menstruus.jpg
"Pionus menstruus" by Daniel de Duarte Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The blue-headed parrot (Pionus menstruus) is one of eight species of Pionus parrot native to Central America and South America. Measuring around 11 inches this bird's lifespan is around 25 years. Don't get muddled between this species and blue-fronted Amazon parrots as they are quite different.

The blue-headed parrot is native to South America and Central America and can be found in the America-Amazon basin from Costa Rica to Panama. 

Some good places to spot them in their native habitat are Brazil, Bolivia, Central America, Costa Rica, Trinidad, and Venezuela. In these countries, they live in forests and some more open locations. They tend to live in groups, often roosting in palm trees, and are a sociable bird.

Whilst their name derives from a distinctive blue head this parrot has a number of subtle color markings. The blue of the head extends some way down the chest to the green body. When examined closely it can be seen that they have red coloring beneath their tail feathers and some dashes of yellow on the wing coverts. The mandible (lower jaw area) is black but has reddish areas at the sides. You will also note some reddish feathers around the ceres (a soft, fleshy swelling on the top of the beak).
Of the parrots commonly kept as pets, the blue-headed is one of the most affectionate and calm. With dedicated coaching, they can also be reared into reasonable mimics. However, they are not the best mimics, and in fact on the plus side are quite quiet for parrots.

The blue-headed parrot is comfortable in both an aviary and indoors, but if you have a non-captive bred specimen then the acclimatization process can take up to two years.

For this bird grit and cuttlefish bone are good supplements to the standard parrot diet of parrot mix, fruit, and greens. In the wild, they enjoy seed as the staple food.

One health issue to watch out for with this species is that these generally healthy birds have a disposition to aspergillosis. This fungal disease is marked by poor breathing. In addition to this, a swollen eye ring can be a sign of a nasal blockage. Finally, the Pionus can exhibit flaky bills, but this is just a sign of intensive use rather than something to be concerned over. If you breed your pet you can expect a clutch of three to five eggs.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Fact Sheet: WHITE-CAPPED PIONUS - Pionus Senelis

Photo of a pet White-capped Pionus parrot (Pio...
White-capped Pionus parrot (Pionus senilis). It had both its wings clipped and some of the feathers on both sides were growing back. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
(Original Title: Rainforest Birds - White-Capped Pionus)

Bird Name:
White-capped Pionus

Latin Name:
Pionus senelis

Least Concern

Scientific Classification:
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Psittaciformes
Family: Psittacidae
Tribe: Arini
Genus: Pionus
Species: P. senilis

General Information:
The White Pionus is a relatively small and common domestically kept bird. In the wild its range extends from Mexico south to Panama, and can be found in a variety of habitats. The White-capped Pionus feeds in flocks comprised of 30 to 50 individuals, sometimes wandering beyond the breeding range after nesting is finished.

Physical Description:
The White Pionus is usually between 9 and 11 inches in length and weighs around 220 g. The White-capped is considered the smallest pionus. Their name is derived from the small white patch that adorns the head of the male. Males are generally larger than females and have a darker blue hue. In females, the blue plumage fades into scaling on the lower breast and their shoulder patches are duller. The White-capped Pionus' undertail, like those of all pionus, is bright red, and has speckled brown patches on its dorsal wings. There is also a blue lacing around its neck and along the edge of its tail feathers.

Its diet encompasses various seeds and nuts as well as fruit and corn, which have made it a pest creature to many farmers and plantations.

These parrots are native to Central and South America, and have a range from Southwestern Mexico down across Panama. They are primarily found in lowland tropical forests as well as oak and pine forests up to 6000 feet in elevation. White-capped Pionus frequently nest in tree cavities or hollow palm stubs.

A female Pionus will lay between 3 and 6 eggs per clutch in an unlined nest. In North America, the White-capped usually breeds in the spring, from approximately February or March to June or July.